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Stop!

I know another Arudino project that probably could have been done a little bit easier by someone a little bit smarter

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A wireless remote stop for a convey belt system.

Background

As the IT guy you wouldn't think that I would be involved in working on industrial equipment that eats up scrap. But SURPRISE! all of that stuff has computers in it now. So often times I get asked to help with someone or to see if there is anything I can do when no one else can do anything and contacting the OEM is going to cost to much.

So that's kind of what happened this time, we had have a conveyor belt and pre chopper (big machine that crews up wire) that gets loaded from a crane. Sometimes when they are loading the machine wire will get wrapped around and stuck in the contraption, in the worst cases burning out some belts or overheating a motor. In the past we used to have a full time employee just stand by the control panel watching over everything (really not being able to see because everything is high off the ground) but listening for a problem when something went wrong he hit the STOP button.

Times being what they are management decided that wasn't a very efficient use of resources (which I agree with, honestly if they would have talked to me in the first place (since the machine is only a year old) this wouldn't have ever been a problem) but I digress ... anyways, the whole thing is run off of a Allen Barley PLC (three of them (including two touch screens) connected with ethernet, wifi, and some coaxial cable for something) They contacted the vendor asking if there was simple way to stop everything from the crane, mostly because they use a wireless windows tablet to control most of the finer details of the operation. The problem is to stop this piece of the equipment they have to flip through three different screens and you can't let it sit there because it times out and moves back to the main screen, they wanted something simpler then that.

So we call the OEM asking for a cheap solutions (I know I said that already), the smiled then happily came back with $20,000 and two months, while this is certainly cheaper then paying someone full time to wait to push a button while watching someone else work, its not quite the cheap and timely solution we were looking for.

Idea

So however it happened, it happened, someone asked me what I thought. I took a day or so looked at everything talked to the maintenance people, just in general tried to get a better understanding of how this thing worked and what we were actually trying to do. (including but not limited to understanding who was going to be around and if we were actually looking for just a STOP or an ESTOP)

I have been playing around with arduino for a couple of years, mainly doing some lame things (flashing lights at halloween and other silly stuff) I found out from the prints and plans that all I needed to do get the desired result is connect a input on the PLC to ground.

I talked to the maintenance people (one is a master electrician) finding out how he would be comfortable making that connection. For reasons that I didn't want to argue about he wants a relay that switches a 5 V power supply that he supplies that will in turn switch a relay that he supplies that will connect to the PLC, I'm ok with that an extra $20 in stuff a couple extra minutes in his install time and everyone is happy ... fine !

After I got the end requirements figured out, (and actually the electrician) just tests his little setup and we know that the machine stops how we want. I just have to get a button in the crane to flip a relay in a cabinet. Simple (or so I hope)


I plan to jam an arudino in to this thing with a 433 transceiver in it, then put another one on the other side to flip the relay.

Mount the button in the crane power it up and call it GOOD



I'll go over how I put everything together when I get the rest of the pieces


so far I have:

the arduino for the panel

The DC to DC transformer (24 V to 5 V the cranes run on 24 V)

A couple LM317s for powering up the 433 modules

and the arduino for inside the button

BTW:

I decided it would be prettier to use this for in the panel

since its DIN...

Read more »

  • 1 × Industruino https://industruino.com/shop/product/industruino-proto-kit-8
  • 1 × Stop Button Square Box AC 240V 3A Latching NC Emergency Stop Push Button Switch
  • 1 × 433Mhz Wireless Transceiver 433Mhz Wireless RF Transceiver Module CC1101 with Antenna ARD0607
  • 1 × 24 V to 5 V transformer DC-DC Buck Converter 12V/24V to 5V 5A/25W Step-down Voltage Transformer
  • 1 × LM317 Power Management ICs / Linear Voltage Regulators and LDOs

View all 7 components

  • All Done ... Finally

    Anthony.selby11/01/2016 at 15:23 0 comments

    I know a lot of you probably thought that I had given up or that I simply didn't finish this project, well when you work in a place like I do. You end up with thousands of things going on and some of them just don't measure up on the priority list.

    Anyways, a lot has changed from when I started, mainly new devices were available, which made things a lot easier on me.

    I ended up getting some adafruit feathers (https://www.adafruit.com/products/3077) added a couple of the antenna connector (https://www.adafruit.com/products/1661) and the adapter (https://www.adafruit.com/products/851) then I put this on the receiver (https://www.amazon.com/Hawkeye-UHF-Dipole-433MHZ-Antenna/dp/B012DGK1KC/ref=sr_1_18?ie=UTF8&qid=1478013651&sr=8-18&keywords=433mhz+antenna)


    Modified the example source code a little bit to trip a relay when the button was pushed and BOOM ... all done


    I added the battery pack on the transmitter side, because the crane operators like to charge their cell phones and I wanted it to still work


    Tried it all together and everything works, I'm planning on running over there tomorrow so I will add some final pictures but everything works and everyone is happy.


    Thanks for all the comments and support

  • Long Time ... Got more stuff

    Anthony.selby11/19/2015 at 17:37 0 comments

    So I got the new stuff ...

    The level converters really, and I changed the button side to a 3.3 V arudino mini pro so I wouldn't have to deal with that any of that in the small box.

    I got the Button together and working with the CC1101 everything looks great, the code went together easily and setting the SPI up was easy. The industrino is a little bit harder (atleast for me) I got everything wired in to the level converter but since its a 32u4 instead of a 328p the SPI is a little different and since I have the "cool" din mount thing stuff is slightly less documented then would help my little brain. But I spent all last night reading some forums and looking at the difference in the SPI.h file that I think I can firgure it out ... so that is the goal for today and tomorrow

  • So ... Not so Great

    Anthony.selby10/30/2015 at 01:09 0 comments

    I kinda of have things working .... just not the way I want them

    I wasn't really thinking when I was looking at the industruino its a 5v arduino which is great and all but the cc1101 requires 3.3v for power (not a problem) and data (problem) so I had some cheap 433 radios hooked them up ... changed the code to use those instead ... and hurray it worked

    The problem is (with a lot of those cheap 433 modules) the range just doesn't work out well ... I can get about 30 feet away and it still works but any farther and it just doesn't do it (30 feet is enough but it doesn't make it through the concrete :-( )

    So I ordered a logic level converter and a couple other odds and ends to see if I can get the cc1101s working

    Everything is suppose to be here by the 2nd or 3rd ... go amazon

    So I'll write another post after I get a chance to play with things

  • Some Progress

    Anthony.selby10/28/2015 at 21:23 0 comments

    I got the button put together and programmed

    Super simple code

    #include <ELECHOUSE_CC1101.h>
    
    ELECHOUSE_CC1101 cc1101;
    byte TX_NOTPUSHED_buffer[61] = {0};
    byte TX_PUSHED_buffer[61] = {0};
    byte i;
    int buttonState = 0;
    
    void setup() {
      pinMode(3, INPUT);
      
      // put your setup code here, to run once:
      Serial.begin(9600);
      cc1101.Init();
      for (i = 0; i <61; i ++)
      {
        TX_NOTPUSHED_buffer[i] = 0;
        TX_PUSHED_buffer[i] = 1;
      }
    }
    
    void loop() {
       buttonState = digitalRead(3);
    
      if (buttonState == HIGH) {
        // NOT PUSHED
        Serial.println("Not Pushed");
         cc1101.SendData(TX_NOTPUSHED_buffer,61);
      } else {
        // PUSHED
        Serial.println("Pushed");
        cc1101.SendData(TX_PUSHED_buffer,61);
      }
    
    }

    It does seem to work ... and it seems (even though it may not look like it) pretty reliabile ... I knocked it around a little bit and it still working just fine :-D


  • Got some stuff

    Anthony.selby10/28/2015 at 00:18 0 comments

    So I got more parts today, I have everything I need expect the relay.

    Tomorrow I plan on wiring up the remote side (finishing the remote side) then setting up the PLC side without the relay (I plan on using the read out on the screen to display status as well)

    We'll see how much I actually get done

  • First Log

    Anthony.selby10/26/2015 at 20:38 0 comments

    Basically I just set up this page.

    The only reason I'm putting anything here is I was going to put the things I have recieved so far

    Industruino

    Ardunio Mini

    LM317

    24 V to 5 V power converter

    *Added some "Before" Pictures

View all 6 project logs

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Discussions

Ted Russ wrote 06/13/2016 at 10:15 point

Hi just a quick thought but some of these (http://www.banggood.com/DC-12V-Single-Channel-Electronic-Access-Remote-Switch-Self-Locking-p-997084.html) remote controls with fob controls do the job reliably, all you'd need is to perhaps slip one of these babies into the Big Red Button housing, the receiver into the machine housing and maybe extend the receiver by a piece of co-ax to a whip antenna. I have a 4 channel version of this and got about 20m reliably  Certainly a fairly inexpensive thing to try, and might solve your worries. 

  Are you sure? yes | no

Anthony.selby wrote 11/01/2016 at 15:26 point

That probably would have worked, and I could have even added some stuff to handle the logging. 

The current version with the feathers, also logs and alerts everyone over ethernet that the stop button has been pushed.

  Are you sure? yes | no

ben biles wrote 10/30/2015 at 02:54 point

Hi , I like the idea of a wireless stop button BUT if this is the emergency stop button and there is some interference over RF and the machine won't stop ?? this could be really bad !!

I don't want to rubbish your idea at all, I think its a great idea , just want to give you honest feeback !!

how about 2 x modules on different frequencies for redundency? or even a mesh network of stop start buttons to reduce wall probelms?

I was also thinking you should look into a CC1101 module that has an intergrated power amp PA. I also tested the cc1101 module and got the same kind of range. would have trouble with walls too.

To increase range try slowing down the transmission and reducing bandwidth / simplifying modulation etc. install TI's SmartRF Studio 7 and select settings then copy the register settings and use them to inisitalse the module in your code. I tried this and got increased range.

Will follow the project and see how this develops :) good luck with it !!

  Are you sure? yes | no

greenaum wrote 10/27/2015 at 11:56 point

Looks interesting! Good luck with it. 

Is the radio transceiver going to be OK with all those motors about? They're pretty low-power, motors can cause lots of noise. Guess that's up to you to find out!

  Are you sure? yes | no

Anthony.selby wrote 10/28/2015 at 00:45 point

I'll let you know ... Thanks for the heads up 

  Are you sure? yes | no

Anthony.selby wrote 11/01/2016 at 15:57 point

* It works great with the 433 modules in the feathers ... we have been using it for about a week now and it has worked every time no problems

  Are you sure? yes | no

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